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French actress Dommartin dies at 45

'Wings of Desire' star made debut in Wenders' film

French thesp Solveig Dommartin, who made an indelible screen debut as Marion the lonely trapeze artist in Wim Wenders’ “Wings of Desire,” died Jan. 11 of a heart attack. Although most official accounts claim she was born in 1958, her mother told reporters her daughter was born in May 1961, making her 45 at the time of her death.

The Paris-born Dommartin acted with the Compagnie Timothee Laine and Theater Labor Warschau legit troupes and worked as an assistant to iconoclastic French helmer Jacques Rozier. In 1987, she dazzled audiences as an ethereal aerialist who tempts the lovesick angel played by Bruno Ganz to trade his wings for mortality.

Dommartin, who was romantically linked with Wenders for many years, co-wrote his ambitious 270-minute globe-trotting road movie “Until the End of the World” (1991) in which she acted opposite William Hurt.

Thesp also reprised her role as Marion in Wenders’ “Faraway, So Close!” in 1993.

Although Dommartin occasionally appeared on Gallic TV series throughout the 1990s, her bigscreen work was sparse.  She acted in two Claire Denis films, “No Fear, No Die” (1990) and “I Can’t Sleep” (1994), in addition to 1990’s “The Prisoner of St. Petersburg.”

Dommartin edited Wenders’ “Tokyo-Ga” (1985) and directed her own short film, “If There Were a Bridge” in 1998.

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